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  1. Looks like I’m back again! A big shout out to whoever posted to the Texas rebel Facebook group about the challenge. I’m wanting to catch up with the community here and share shenanigans that happened while I was away. For those of you who don’t know me… Hi I’m Korranation and my life is kinda crazy [video]https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5PhiYI5GGZA[/video] Sorry for those of you on tapatalk. The hidden feature doesn’t work and yall are subjugated to a wall of text that is my life. I’ll sprinkle in some pics and illustrations for some pizazz. The last challenge I was writing about had something to do with creating a and maintaining fictitious animal crossing village seen only via text-based story. And honestly, I was using that as a means of escapism to distract myself from my job at the time. A few weeks after my last post I went to the doctor’s office for a checkup. I was diagnosed with a chronic disease. And a few days after my diagnosis I was let go from my job. I wallowed around in my apartment for a few months. After a time of locking myself away in my apartment in self-isolation I decided to get a grave yard shift job so I could get out of the house, have to physically move around, and do something while I listened to audio books. After some more time there, I decided to bust my bum and network my way into a desk job again. Now I have a job with less of a commute time and a great working environment. My life has hit a good plateau right now and I feel like I have enough time to be posting regularly here. I’ve finally healed my body and gotten rid of my toxic head space. I want to focus on healing up and prepping my body for the onslaught that is the holiday festive foods. I want to make sure my tummy is all good this challenge, then start reintroducing foods into my diet next challenge. I know you’re thinking “But Korranation, haven’t you been on AIP so your symptoms wouldn’t come back?” And my answer is why yes of course I did. But then just like everything else, I fell off the bandwagon. I did start small with things like rice, then potatoes, then dairy which I can do in small doses. You can’t keep this rebel away from her prized sea salt and vinegar chips! RAID ALL THE KITCHENS CHALLENGE Water – drink X amount of water I usually don’t drink much water at work and don’t until towards the end of day where I end up chugging +32oz in one go either because my legs are cramping, my saliva is getting foamy (which means dehydration), or I’m feeling hungry after I’ve eaten but I only want bad foods. Food – try new AIP recipes and post them here I meal prep all the time. I have morning smoothies every day. Which is kale, coconut water, avocado, banana, and collagen peptide protein. I don’t want to give myself a certain number to do each week or challenge since I can make enough food to last me the entire challenge in one meal prep session. Tracking – log in all food into MFP I need to start logging things into the app anyways. I know if I don’t hit a certain calorie amount at lunch or have a snack buffer to fill that deficient, I’ll end up binging when I get home or go to the snack shack at work and get either caramel popcorn or gummies which has no nutritional value and causes a later crash. I want to use this time to find more nutrient dense foods and snacks that I can always go to. I may invest in the MFP premium since I’ve been wanting a more in-depth look into nutrients other than the macros (protein/carbs/fats) Lifestyle – Stoic evening routine I found a video going in-depth about stoic methods important people in history tried. Plus I found a free pdf copy of Marcus Aurelius’ journal called Meditations. It was his private journal that was never meant to be read. But I want to see what the most powerful person in that time period worried about. From the summaries I’ve read it seems to be no different that the morning pages I do. I’d love to do other things like: doing a morning stoic routine so I can clear out the flotsam and jetsam in my mind to be ready to have a focused and more productive day writing every day so I can be done in time for the end of NaNoWriMo maintaining my L.inked.In everyday in hopes of finding a recruiter to move me to a full time employee position so I can get some healthcare having an overall evening apartment clean up routine so I have less mess to walk through and deal with And start a garden on my patio so I can have home grown veggies I can enjoy But all this is less interesting to discuss on here, it’s mainly maintenance that will not lead to a big reward at the end of this challenge (excluding the professional social media one). Anyways...
  2. Hello! I am a mom with a toddler that is usually sitting on me, hanging off me, having me read books out loud, or trying to pull me down the hall... play breaks are frequent, but short...so I will try to keep up here with my small bites of 2 hand time. I'm also still figuring out how NF works and fits together. So here are my goals for this challenge: Eat & drink healthier: - Eat only AIP+ when at home, outside I can have non-AIP snacks but not anything sweet. - Come up with a batch cooking meal plan for each week with 4 meals, 2 days of cooking. Stronger: - See a trainer at the Y once a week before (probably) quitting--or other significant exercise once a week. Ship shape mom life: - Strictly follow toddler meal schedule, after putting it up for spouse. Okay, Mister is giving me looks, so I am done!
  3. And once again, I'm back! The past several months my challenges have been pretty lackluster (and usually abandoned), largely because of lingering health-related symptoms (fatigue and insomnia, among others…) that have thrown me off track. What's been more difficult to deal with than the symptoms themselves, though, is how I've reacted to them - I've been putting many of my fitness goals on hold until my health is more stable and certain. As a result, I've been feeling stuck, frustrated, and a bit aimless for a while now - especially since I don't know when my health will be more predictable. While many of my goals still need to be health-related, it's also time for me to figure out how to work around set-backs and uncertainty, rather than waiting for a time when everything comes together (because that probably isn't going to happen!). I have made some progress during my hiatus, however. First, I switched my powerlifting programming to a RPE-style approach - I go in knowing what lifts I need to do and how many reps per set are on the table, but adjust the weight and volume depending on how I'm feeling. This has been a huge help energy-wise (I burned myself out on the Juggernaut volume) and mentally, because I don't feel like I'm failing when I can't keep up with my program (and I can push myself when I'm feeling good!). It's too early to tell how I'm progressing with this strategy, though - I'll re-evaluate in about a month. Second, a little over a week ago I met with a nutritionist who has experience working with clients with health issues and food intolerances. We talked for almost three hours about my health history, current issues, things I've tried, and goals for the next few years. One of the things that came out of my initial tracking for her is that I might have some sensitivities to FODMAPs - certain types of carbohydrates found in foods - so I'm going to go a "lite" version of the FODMAP elimination diet ("lite" because my choices are already pretty restricted on AIP Paleo). This will be temporary, though, and ultimately we hope to expand my dietary choices soon. Finally, I joined the instagram bandwagon and started posted lifting videos, largely as a way to remind myself of what I can still do (even if it's not where I'd hoped to be yet) and to help me see my progress over larger time scales. It's also encourages me to film my lifts regularly and check my form! My goals for this challenge are designed to keep this momentum going, and start channeling my namesake's determination once again. Goals: Nutrition Food Diary: Track my food intake and any symptoms 6+ days/week. Bonus: also track on MFP to keep an eye on my macros. This record is necessary for figuring out if I do have additional food sensitivities. First Fermentation: Pick up fermentation supplies (jars, weights, etc.) and start some ferments by the end of the challenge. Post Progress: Post something fitness or food related on my new instagram account at least 2x/week. Screen Curfew: 8:00 - 8:30 pm work nights, 8:30 - 9 pm weekends. Exceptions: I can use my itouch for music, meditation, and tracking apps, and my computer for MFP. This type of goal has always been the most helpful for me for getting me to bed on time, and I've also found that I'm more likely to do something ahead of schedule if I give myself a time range, rather than a specific cutoff (so hopefully I'll get off my computer at 8 pm some nights, rather than always 8:29:59 pm). LUYL Goal: Cold Turkey: Don't use the internet for non-work activities (e.g., social media) when I'm working. 30 min over my lunch break is fine, and I can also use my phone for sending Facebook messages to my boyfriend if need be. To help me with this goal, I'll be using an app called Cold Turkey.
  4. I've started seeing a counselor at my uni to deal with the I-want-do-all-the-things-but-can't-because-I-still-don't-feel-100% fallout. Some of my homework from the last session is to track how I spend my time for two weeks, which conveniently lines up with the inter-challenge break. Challenge goals will be formulated based on the data I collect. Now that lifting is feeling better, I'm also in the process of planning a new lifting program, after using 5/3/1 for ages and kind of stalling. Let's see how I respond to some volume... And now that sleep is more stable, it's also time for me to try some more AIP reintroductions, which I'll track here since I need to keep track of them somewhere! The reintroduction for today (6/27): sugar snap peas. ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Updated to add GOALS Goal 1: Evening Routine Start wrapping up the day between 8:15 and 8:30 pm (between 8:00 pm and 8:15 pm if I still need to shower). My hope is that by giving myself a time window instead of a specific time, I'll see that it's, say, 8:21 pm and think "Oh, time to wind down!" instead of "9 more minutes!" I might also move this time earlier if I'm successful during the first part of the challenge. Wrapping up the day = Get ready for the next day as much as I can and have time/energy for (picking out clothes to wear the next day, packing food, packing bags, washing dishes, etc.), Getting ready for bed Spending some time winding down (e.g., with reading or meditation) Goal 2: Mobility Do at least 5 min of mobility work on my rest days. This isn't much, but I just want to get in the habit of thinking about it again, and usually once I've started I'll do more if I need to. Goal 3 (LUYL): Log the good stuff Sometimes when I have a bad day physically (or even if I'm worried about the future because of my health) I can forget how much I've accomplished in my work and personal life, and how much I can still do and enjoy even if some activities (e.g., going to swing dances in the evening) would be too taxing. I'll keep a journal of these things on a day-to-day basis so I have a reminder of the good stuff when I need one. I might also experiment with other mediums besides writing (e.g., photography). Goal: log or otherwise record the good stuff 6+ days/week. Goal 4 (LUYL): Spend quality time with myself I haven't been giving much time for just me recently, and, as an introvert, I suspect that's been stressing me out. Goal to fix that: Give two hours of time to ME on the weekends. To count as ME time, I need to be by myself (at least in a separate room from other people, or with plenty of personal space if I'm outside). Possible activities include going for a walk on my own, drawing, painting, journaling, taking photos, listening to music, reading, etc. Netflix will count if I'm really really tired and don't have much energy, but other things take precedence. Things that don't count: lifting, researching how to draw/lift/do some other skill (i.e., don't collect underpants), working on my PhD, messaging or talking to other people.
  5. Because object permanence. Yep, I disappeared during the last challenge I tried to complete, mostly because sleep wasn't happening, despite my efforts to sort it out. That's improving, though I still have bad nights, probably thanks largely to orange goggles, magnesium powder, high-ish dose vitamin C, and preliminary attempts at stress management. Thankfully my PhD supervisor gives me a lot of flexibility for when, where, and how much I work, so my newly started graduate studies can take a back seat when needed to sort out the health stuff. Also on the plus side, I pulled 147.5 kg for a single during my 1+ deadlift session yesterday, so my deadlift is almost back up to its previous glory (152 kg). Goals: Be in bed by 9:30 pm (but aim for 9 pm so I actually hit this target). Track my food either in advance or as I go (I shouldn't have to log more than two past meals/snacks at once). Exception: I don't need to track this first weekend (June 3-4) while traveling, though my diet will remain the same. Go easy on the cashew butter (limit: 150 g/day). Without it it's hard for me to get enough calories on AIP (+ some reintroductions), but I don't need aaaall of the cashew butter. LUYL: Draw and/or paint at least 2x/week. I'm waiting on a set of brushes so I can try watercolours Oh, and don't disappear.
  6. I'm jumping in late with a three week challenge! A lot has happened since I disappeared from the forums in October, so let me explain… At the end of October I went to Wales and England to visit my friends for a month, which was spectacular. What I didn't say in my last challenge was that I was working on obtaining a PhD studentship back at my former uni in England, because life is short and I'd rather be in the UK. Studentship and funding have been obtained, so I'm England-bound at the end of March! And this also happened in England in November: Another reason I can't wait to return! GOALS 1) Track food on MFP 6-7 days/week. I'm still following the autoimmune paleo protocol, though, minus a few reintroductions, so no peanuts! 2) Sleep hygiene: Screen curfew at 8 pm (7:30 pm if I still need to take a shower before bed) Meditate every night before bed 3) Get 50,000+ steps/week LUYL Plan main daily activities (appts, work, lifting, Skypes, etc) for the week on Google calendar, tweaking throughout the week Work at least 15/17.5/20 hrs/week for challenge weeks 2/3/4 respectively (work = applying for visa, uni paperwork, reading papers, online courses, self-guided study, chats with supervisor, etc.) Misc. things to do by end of challenge: Apply for my visa. Read up on and try out the gymnastics rings my boyfriend got me for Christmas. #BestBoyfriendEver Write up an intermediate lifting program, with room for ring work.
  7. Brief backstory: NF Rebel and powerlifter since April 2014. Currently on leave from my graduate program to focus on some health issues before continuing the get-my-PhD saga. The past couple of challenges I’ve solidified the basic, keep-me-functional habits and gathered data to aid in troubleshooting some lingering issues. Now that that foundation is set, it’s time to take on some dragons: I need to take a critical look at my lifting form, especially for deadlifts and bench. After a recent conversation with a friend about bench form, I filmed my bench for the second time ever (yeah, should have done this much more often) and discovered that I’m tucking my elbows too much, putting my elbows ahead of my wrists at the bottom of the lift (à less efficient transfer of force and less pec involvement in the lift). That might explain why my bench lags behind my other lifts so much. Deadlifts, meanwhile, are still feeling awkward after several weeks of mobility issues from a bad mattress, and I really need to keep an eye on my back position. Meditation practice is becoming a habit, but longer meditations are still intimidating. I’ve gotten a bit lazy about batch cooking since returning home, besides cooking-all-the-meat type batch cooking. My cooking is also getting somewhat monotonous, and I want to add more techniques/dishes to my toolkit. Eventually I need to start working again, for a variety of reasons: learning what habits work best for me, establishing productive practices, and making use of my time now to gain skills that will be helpful during my PhD. I also want to give myself plenty of time to rebuild my work tolerance. Plus I enjoy the work and leveling up in this sphere. However, getting better is still the priority. Since slaying dragons is so last millennium, I’ll train dragons this challenge. GOAL 0: Don’t neglect the essentials Food: Stick to AIP paleo, minus the few foods I’ve reintroduced. Track on MFP. Eat enough. Sleep: 8 pm screen curfew. Track sleep quality. Exercise: Lifting ~3x/week, excluding deload weeks. Walk several times a week. Mobility: Yoga and foam rolling/SMR a few times a week, especially on rest days. I’m not tracking or scoring these closely – mostly I just need to write these down so I don’t start slipping on that screen curfew! GOAL 1: Scrutinize my form Record, at the minimum My top two 5/3/1 work sets for the Big Four lifts, plus any joker sets My heaviest front squat sets (at least two from the session) At least twice, to check form: RDLs and good mornings Re-read the Starting Strength chapters on the Big Four One or two misses/partial misses is fine, as long as the misses aren’t on the same lift. GOAL 2: Meditate Meditate daily Have a longer meditation session at least 1x/week (minimum length = 20 min. + (week #)*5 min.) Read Full Catastrophe Living GOAL 3: Escape the cooking rut Try five new recipes over the course of the challenge. GOAL 4: Devote time each week to focused work, because I can’t be a professional recreational powerlifter forever. Work = Reading literature in my field Working on data analysis or modeling from one of my Master’s or PhD projects Learning a skill that will help me down the road, such as Python (can use non-work related projects for this), machine learning, or dynamical systems theory Working on a Coursera course Focused = Work for at least 30 min. at a time before taking a break No non-work related internet or phone use (e.g., Facebook, email) Foam rolling/stretching is fine as long as it doesn’t distract from the task Listening to music is fine as long as I pick my selection beforehand/limit jumping around between tracks and playlists I’ll start with 5 hr/week and then add 0-1 hr to the weekly goal each week depending on how I do/feel. The goals started yesterday since I’m skipping Zero Week this time around for a 5 week challenge (even if MATLAB doesn’t count from zero…).
  8. My first-proper-challenge-in-a-while, settling-in-back-home, fairly-flexible-goals challenge went pretty well. I also identified a few things I need to work on, which will be the focus of this next challenge: GOAL 1: Putting the final food pieces together a) Track every day using MFP. Right now I'm too sensitive to calorie/macro levels (and too bad at staying close enough to my target without logging) to not track. The goal is to run a slight deficit, but I'm not setting any explicit limits now because I'm not sure what the sweet spot is -- however, I do have one macros goal... b ) Get 130+ grams of protein each day. 140-160 grams is better. c) Properly start the reintroduction phase of the AIP diet. Use a food journal to keep track of any reactions. d) Eat at least 1/2 pound of liver/week. e) Take ALL the supplements. I'm pretty good about this, but there are 2-3 doses that I tend to miss. GOAL 2: Mobility a) Mobility WOD style mobility work at least 4x/week. Because yoga isn't enough for me these days. b ) At least 3 15+ minute yoga sessions/week (outside of my warm-up and cool-down for lifting sessions). Because yoga is really helpful even if it's not enough! GOAL 3: Screen curfew No phone or computer screen time after 8 pm, with the exception of "I'm alive" type texts and meditation apps. Carrying this over from the previous challenge because I know I won't keep it up unless it's an explicit goal. Bonus points for putting away the phone/computer before the cut-off. LUYL GOAL: Meditation Meditate at least 6x/week before 5 pm. I've had good meditation streaks before, but have had trouble making it a consistent habit, possibly in part because I usually meditate before going to bed. While that's great for unwinding, trying to work my weak meditation muscle when I'm really tired isn't setting me up for success -- hence the time component to this goal. Bonus points for also meditating before bed and for reading Full Catastrophe Living. Other miscellaneous notes: Lifting program is still a version of 5/3/1... just deloaded so I'm not expecting to hit PRs this challenge (besides high bar squat PRs since it's the first time I've focused on them in a while). I'm travelling the first week of August and will probably not lift that week, but I do plan to keep up with my goals. The dog theme is because 1) cutting sucks and dogs make everything better, and 2) I have an orientation on July 26th so I can start volunteering at a local dog rescue! Please spam my thread with many many more dog photos.
  9. If you’re expecting a challenge centered around pause squats and deadlifts, my apologies ;). I’m pausing life, not my lifts. I’ve been MIA recently (but still lifting!), so for those of you who don’t know me: I’m a first year PhD student and started powerlifting when I joined NF about two years ago. After having some chronic health issues flare up this past year, I’ve decided to take about a year off to focus on getting my health in order. This will be my first challenge while on leave, so my goals are designed to help me make that transition + do what I need to for my recovery: Goal 1: Write down a daily plan by the end of breakfast that day. Doesn’t have to be super detailed, and doesn’t even have to be carried out – I just want to impose some structure on now structure-less days. Goal 2: Accomplish the following each day: Some sort of movement (e.g., lifting, walking, stretching, yoga…) Some sort of adulting (e.g., groceries, laundry, batch cooking, cleaning, making doctor’s appointments, going to doctor’s appointments…) An adventure (e.g., hiking, visiting rescue kittens, making a new/fun recipe, trying a new yoga pose, going dancing, learning a new programming language, listening to new music, going to the library, raiding a thrift store, working towards a handstand…) Some things can double-count (e.g., hiking = adventure + movement) at my discretion. I’ll have plenty of help with #3 since I’m spending most of the summer with The Best Friend, who is also fortuitously taking a couple months off before heading to grad school herself. Goal 3: 8:00 pm screen curfew, with two exceptions: 1) using my phone or computer for guided meditation, and 2) texting my mom (or other concerned party) to let her know I’m alive. From past challenges I know this is the best way to ensure an early bed time. LUYL goal: No brains – i.e., no reading papers or doing research in my field (neuroscience) or otherwise, for that matter. Coding for fun or learning math (NOT applied to biology/neuroscience) is fine if I ultimately need something to keep my brain busy. Yes, I actually need to make not working a goal. Other than that… food is still AIP, lifting program is still 5/3/1 (latest cycle ends this week). Maxes at the start of the challenge: Squat: 265 lbs (120.2 kg) Bench: 150 lbs (68 kg) Deadlift: 335 lbs (152 kg) OHP: 100 lbs (45.4 kg) I’m not starting the challenge in full until June 12, which is conveniently my first full day home. In the meantime, there will be plenty of exercising and adulting as I get ready to move…
  10. I am a middle school math teacher looking to my fitness my new career. I currently have a USAW level 1 coaching cert as well as a personal training certification from ACTION. I am currently studying to get my personal training certification from ACE so I am more hirable, as well as get my StrongFirst kettlebell certification. I have just put myself back on the autoimmune protocol as I have hypothyroidism and celiac's disease and have been run down and prone to the cold the past couple of months. Of course I have some pounds that I would like to drop, but I am more concerned with my goal of getting the kettlebell certification. If there is a fellow AIPer or KB swinger looking for an accountability partner, let me know.
  11. Hiya… I’m a little late, but since I have a new goal it’s time for another challenge :). For those who don’t know me, I’m a grad student and powerlifter. I haven’t been around the past few challenges since I’ve been struggling with some chronic health issues that flared up in September. For the most part I’ve maintained my NF-inspired habits, but there are a few things I want to focus on for the next 22 days. Goal 1: 10,000+ steps, as measured by my Fitbit, each day. This is the new goal and, as evidenced by my title, the focus for this challenge. I’m holding on to a bunch of extra weight because of all of the endocrine issues, and I need to find a way to shift it without having my body flip out because I’m asking too much of it or cutting calories too low. So… lots of walking. To give an idea of where I am now, since my work is pretty sedentary and I bike more than walk, I’ve been averaging ~5,000 steps/day before this. Grading: A = 21+ days, B = 19-20 days, C = 17-18 days Goal 2: Take all the supplements, and take them at the right time (I’m pretty good about this, but sometimes miss my afternoon/dinner supplements). Grading: A = <=3 misses, B = <= 6 misses, C = <= 9 misses Goal 3: Have regular Epsom salt baths (~3x/week). Grading: A = 9+ baths, B = 7-8 baths, C = 5-6 baths LUYL Goal: Meditate every day. I’ve mostly been using the Stop, Breathe, Think app to track this. Grading: A = 21+ days, B = 19-20 days, C = 17-18 days Otherwise, I’m still making lift, eat, and sleep my priorities. On the food front, I’m still following the Autoimmune Paleo Protocol, but with a more moderate carb intake (mostly from sweet potatoes, plus a little fruit). Lifting is finally feeling good again, and I’ve gotten into a good routine with a variation of Wendler’s 5/3/1 that has me lifting 4x/week. Progress has been super slow the last several months, but I’ve taken this as an opportunity to work on my form and weaknesses (good-bye rounded back deadlifts!). At the end of my last cycle, my heavy singles were 245 lbs (squat), 135 lbs (bench), 310 lbs (deadlift), and 95 lbs (OHP).
  12. Hello. I've got an autoimmune disease so I'm doing AIP while trying to work around 50 hrs a week but I've discovered I have to avoid FODMAPS now too. *dramatic sigh* Anyone else having to avoid both nightshades and fodmaps while going paleo? I'm trying to find some variety instead of just sticking with: Morn: smoothie or bacon Noon: chicken or tuna salad Eve: meat and s. potato for dinner. O.o Any ideas?
  13. I have never in my life ever put any effort into losing weight before, except in the last year. It used to fall right off, especially when I switched to paleo. But I guess my yo-yoing has gotten the better of me and now I need some help. Last year I switched back to paleo after a few months of crap and also started going to a boot camp 3-5 times a week. After 3 months, no fat loss. Spoke to one of the trainers that was also paleo, did a week of food journaling, and we agreed that I probably wasn't eating enough; I only stayed at the boot camp another month though. Fast forward to now. I'm 6 weeks into the P90X3 program and have been following the Autoimmune Protocol diet (AIP), which is basically just a stricter form of paleo. Took my measurements when I started and I'm at the highest body fat percentage I've ever been. Now, I haven't done the measurements again and I know I'm only half way through but my pants don't feel any looser, which is the true measurement, and after last year I guess I'm just feeling a bit frustrated. Perhaps my diet still isn't up to par? Below is an example of my daily food intake: Breakfast: Bowl of breakfast skillet - hamburger, japanese yam, summer squash, kale AM Snack: Smoothie - apple juice, two handfuls of mixed leafy greens, half a banana and handful of frozen fruit, tablespoon of olive oil, bit of seaweed, gelatin, and colostrum Lunch: 2 burgers, bowl of mixed veggies sauteed in bacon fat PM Snack: Bowl of soup Dinner: 2 chicken thighs with skin fried in bacon fat, bowl of root veggies baked with a bit of duck fat, and sauteed spinach I drink water through out the day except with dinner, when I drink my kombucha. I'm almost never hungry and sometimes have to force myself to finish my lunch. I'm F, 5'5", 136 lbs, with of about 32% bf Any suggestions?
  14. I've seen a personal challenge or two of people starting the paleo autoimmune protocol (AIP) and I also saw the Staci follow-up article that mentioned she'd done it as well. I plan on switching over to this in March (a ways away, I know, but in Feb I'll be out of town so I decided it would be easier to start after) and am doing my research, trying new recipes, etc. My concern is, while I don't generally count calories, I know that I struggle to eat enough on paleo while I'm working out. if I don't get enough in, I'm exhausted. One of my go-tos is nuts. Fat, protein, calories. Good stuff. I also do the non-paleo protein shake after my work outs and I usually also add a smaller amount of protein to my smoothies. I like my breakfast eggs as well. I know I wouldn't be able to do any of that while on AIP. So, I'm wondering what sort of stuff people eat to make sure they're eating enough to fuel their work outs. As it stands I try to pick at nuts or something here and there even when I'm not hungry because I rarely am hungry enough to eat what I need to eat. I feel like on AIP I'm going to starve to death. Are you on AIP or have you done it? Were you working out at the time? How did it work for you? What did you eat?
  15. Just started the detox that is a combination of AIP whole30 and anti histimine whole30 - the big thing is NO EGGS! any recipes for meatloaf, salmon patties, make ahead type stuff that stick together for my meals? here are the lists of nos from whole30 - http://whole9life.com/2013/06/expanded-iswf-shopping-lists/ combine the nos from both lists...
  16. This is my first challenge with the Druids, and second one overall. I didn't do so well towards the end of the last challenge especially what with preparing for the holiday season so my goals are similar this time around. Diet: Stick to strict autoimmune protocol diet (aip) Motivation for this: "off-roading" away from this diet causes flare up of joint pain, sleep disruption, moodiness, sickness... Well the list goes on, so really my motivation is "don't be an idiot!" Grading: all or nothing, A for complete aip adherence per day, F for 1 or more non-aip ingredient today. Reward: This kind of is it's own reward, because this forces me to be creative in the kitchen to find safe but still healthy meals and I really enjoy cooking. I guess if I really *must* have a material reward, I could treat myself to a kitchen gadget or two! Exercise: Bodyweight workout level 1 : 3x per week Beginners pilates class : 1 x per week Yoga (focus on core and spinal vinyasas) : 2 x per week. Motivation: most of the pain I have is around my back, so I want to build up my core and spine to maintain strength in this area. I did attempt running last year and built up to 2k, but then pulled my back and couldn't walk let alone run. I am hoping that building up core strength will allow me to try a running programme in the future because I really enjoyed the freedom of running around my local park early in the morning - just so peaceful. Grading: A = all 6 planned workouts in the week B = 5 C = 4 D= 3 F = less Reward: more pilates! (i always had this image of pilates being yoga's mean hardcore older brother, but it's not like that at all) I am saving up the money to join the gym so I can get to an intermediate pilates class. Life goal: Clean the clutter. Motivation: stop falling over stuff (mainly books) in my house. Reward: clutter will be sent to either a reselling company, or to local charity shops. First way the reward is a small amount of money, second way the reward is knowing that someone else will get a benefit from our old stuff. Longer term, the reason for de-cluttering is so that we have space to create a nursery as we are planning to start a family quite soon so that too will be its own reward. I'm not clear how I can grade this life goal, but I would like to "finish" at least 2 rooms in our home by the end of the challenge. So here goes my first Druids challenge..... Looking forward to following progress with your challenges too.
  17. Quest for Oneness This is the continuation of my quest for a healthier, more balanced life (check out my last challenge for a little more background). The Journey So Far Over the last two challenges I've Built support team of doctorsSuccessfully completed an autoimmune protocol elimination diet and began reintroductionsBegan meditation as a form of stress reliefTook steps towards meeting new friendsBegan tackling weaknesses in my trainingStarted mindfulness of mouth (read: don't be an asshole)I've had different levels of success with each of these, and many are works in progress. The big challenge this go 'round will be maintaining (and building upon!) the health I've achieved while changing some life factors. New workout routine (back to ALL THE SQUATS!) complete with mucho conditioning, preparing for the GoRuck Light on November 9, and experimenting with foods as I do more reintroductions. Recovery is king here. Without proper recovery I'm going to get knocked on my ass. How Not to Get Knocked on My Ass Tasty, tasty recovery: It's hard to eat a lot doing an AI protocol. Many days I found myself at 1500 calories and under 100g of protein. Lame. I need to eat at least 1800 cals and 130g of protein. Those are my bare minimum goals. Aim will be higher but points will only be taken if I go below this threshold. Grading: A- 40+ days with minimums hit B- 30-39 days C- 25-29 days D- 20-24 days F- 19 or fewer Stats: +1 STR, +1 STA, +2 CON Meditation: Continuation from last challenge. Going to aim for 2x per week at home. Yoga only counts if it's for zen purposes-not stretching or exercise. This, allegedly, helps manage stress. My body reacts much more negatively to stress than the average joe's (example:last week when I had family in town for 2 days and ended up exhausted and crying) so this is really important for my recovery. Grading: A- 11-12 meditations B- 9-10 meditations C- 7-8 meditations F- 6 or fewer Stats: +3 WIS, +1 CON Ruck: I bought my bag and bricks early on. Both are sitting in my closet, unused. Lame. With the ruck looming I figure it's time I put the bag on and get out there. Do something crazy with my ruck at least 1x weekly (this includes hiking, long walks, shortish walks, bring it to the gym for finisher shenanigans, etc). Grading: A- 6+ ruck adventures B- 4-5 ruck adventures F- 3 or fewer Stats: +2 DEX, +2 STA I'm also considering adding a part 2 to this that would involve using my ruck as a day to day bag (with bricks!) but I'm not sure about that. Thoughts fellow Ruckers? Life Side Quest Don't be an asshole: This is a continuation on last challenge. My focus is going to be entirely on maintaining professionalism, giving concise answers, not losing my cool in front of coworkers, etc. Grading: Say 1-3 unnecessary things: A Say 4-6 unnecessary things: C Say more than 6: F Stats: +4 CHA No additional side quests this time. And while it won't be part of my goals I'll be spending this challenge working on food reintroductions. I've got a nifty document drawn up to track dates introduced and reactions (with ratings!). I'll keep that stuff updated here, too. And, since I'm starting a new workout plan there may be things I tinker with. So, that'll be updated here, too. And gifs. I promise there will be gifs.
  18. BIO Since I'm setting up camp in an entirely new area this challenge I figured I'd delve into some background info. I've been with NF since 2011. I've done countless challenges, made many health improvements, and learned a whole lot about lifting weights. Previously, I've been fighter-boxing, dabbled in Muay Thai and an OMer-longterm love affair with yoga. Currently, my fitness routine is a little hodge podge of bodyweight and weight work (we'll talk more about that below). I've also run the gamut on dietary lifestyles. I spent the better part of 14 years as a vegetarian; some years were vegan, some pescatarian. I'm now (grudgingly) what one may consider paleo (we'll talk more about that below, too). Oh, and I partake in intermittent fasting. Otherwise, I'm semi ranty and enjoy shenanigans of all sorts. Oh, and I have a thing for gifs. I'M A HOT MESS All that stuff we'd talk more about, yeah, here it is: Issue 1: Injured Laura is injured. I just don't know that much about it yet. Something about disc degeneration in my cervical spine. Currently using chiropractic to treat it while I wait for my new doctor to become available. So, lifting heavy is on the back burner for the time being. I can still lift from time to time, but not as often. So, I've got a hodge podge of stuff set up. Currently, I'm trying to own the pistol squat. Issue: 2 This is the big one. My body hates me. Or thinks I hate it and is fighting back? Not sure. I do know that I have anxiety and it's out of control. I also know that I'm not happy. At all. And there isn't really a reason for that. And I know that I've been under intense stress for a very, very long time now (hmmm, funny how this all works together). So, in addition to the neck thing I've started to notice a lot of other issues. I won't list them all but I suspect three things might be the issue: 1. Leaky gut (which sounds gross, yay), 2. An Autoimmune disease (specifically RA), and/or 3. Cortisol/Adrenal issues. Before this challenge I was mostly a primal style eater. I didn't' bother to name my dietary choices, but that sums it up pretty well. Now that my body is freaking the frak out, I'm starting an autoimmune protocol. And I'm not that happy about it. Which brings me to: GOALS This isn't going to be set up like NF recommends, but hey, I'm getting way out of my comfort zone here. Mental Well-Being Goals: Goal 1 Get help. I've seeking professional help but I'm a slacker. I'm not going to grade myself on finding the right person to help me since there's no telling how long that will take. I am going to grade myself on how much effort I put in. Call or email nice lady who offered to help and ask for names Call and set up appointment with someone on The List If, after a few meetings, I deem this person isn't The One, call next person on The List within 3 days. Rinse and repeat as necessary.Goal 2 Guided meditation. I tried alone style meditation before bed previously and that was an epic failure. I think something guided will be better. Also, not before bed. I think I'd like to get an app or something to use during walks (which I generally take during my "lunch" break). Do this at least 4x per week. Goal 3 Walk. Minimum of 20 minutes, twice per week at work, as many times as I want at home. Health Goals: Goal 4 Cut back on coffee. Coffee is a no-no in the AIP world, much to my chagrin. Generally, I drink 2 cups in the morning (black). I do this for two reasons: 1. Caffeine, duh. and 2. It's helpful during a fast. I'm going to slowly decrease my coffee intake and grade accordingly: Week 1, one cup per day maximum. Week 2, half cup per day maximum.From here, I'm honestly not sure where I'll go. I thought about doing X number of days without coffee each week but I don't think that will work well. Also, depending on if this is AI or cortisol the future will vary. Cortisol treatments generally recommend no caffeine, while AIP is okay with some caffeine but not COFFEE. So, theoretically, I could add in green tea, which I miss desperately, but I become nauseated when I consume tea on an empty stomach (all kinds). So, unless anyone knows a way to change that, I'm out of luck. So, I think, starting week 3, I might just go cold turkey. We'll see. Goal 5 Eat for autoimmunity. This is helpful for anyone unfamiliar. I rarely drink, or eat gluten as it is. I don't take NSAIDs unless it's an extreme situation. I do adore eggs and eat a ton of grassfed dairy and love me some nightshades. So, my heart is breaking just a little here. These, along with spices, will be the hardest for me to give up. I've already gone a week without dairy. It was annoying more than anything and I've pegged that as the easiest to get rid of. Okay, well this post was full of long, boring words and lacked my usual gif fest. Not my best first impression, I'm sure But I promise for more fun at a later date. I might add points later to 4 of the 5 goals if that's permissible. I haven't done a challenge in which I felt comfortable leveling up in a little while, but if this all goes well that might change.
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